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Sharks stand alone

The Hockey News

The Hockey News

The San Jose Sharks are the new No. 1 team in the latest THN.com Power Rankings, but if Joe Thornton's current team doesn't continue its stellar play, his former team in Boston may leapfrog it soon enough. The Bruins have won eight straight games and jumped 10 spots in this week's rankings from 17th overall to seventh, while outscoring their opponents 42-14 in those games. They're doing it on the strength of scoring balance (eight players have at least 10 points) and typically solid goaltending from Tim Thomas (4-0-0, 1.25 goals-against average, .950 save percentage in his past four games).

Boston, which hasn’t lost so far this month, plays four games in six nights this week, starting with road matchups against divisional rivals Montreal and Buffalo before returning home to host Detroit and Winnipeg Friday and Saturday. Will they continue to rise in our rankings? Check out THN.com every Monday afternoon to find out.

RK.

TEAM

LW

OVERALL

P10

THE SCOOP

1

2

12-5-1

7-2-1

This month, Sharks have beaten Pens, Kings, Wild and Wings, among others. In big games, they play big.

2

1

11-6-3

5-4-1

Apparently, somebody is returning to Pens lineup Monday; can't quite remember his name...

3

6

11-5-3

6-2-2

Jaromir Jagr proving to be perfect linemate for Claude Giroux

4

4

12-6-3

5-4-1

Jonathan Toews on pace for 39 goals; previous career best was 34.

5

8

12-5-3

8-2-0

Six-game homestand continues with bouts against Preds, Oilers.

6

3

10-7-1

3-6-1

If you've seen Alex Ovechkin, please report it to Bruce Boudreau, Caps as soon as possible.

7

17

11-7-0

8-2-0

Bruins dropped three straight to end October, but have yet to lose this month.

8

7

12-8-0

6-4-0

Sabres averaging just two goals-for in past five games; thank goodness goalie Jhonas Enroth has stepped up in Ryan Miller's injury absence.

9

9

10-7-3

4-5-1

Three-game win streak snapped with loss to Wings; Anze Kopitar is ascending to new heights.

10

13

11-7-1

6-3-1

Johan Franzen leads Wings in goals (10), points (20); best of all, he's played all 19 games.

11

12

10-4-3

7-2-1

Blueshirts fire an NHL-worst 25.4 shots per game; their shots-allowed average isn't great, either (31.4, tied for 22nd in the league).

12

5

11-8-0

4-6-0

Formerly surprising Stars now in five-game freefaal and have four games in six days this week.

13

15

10-5-4

6-1-3

Rookie Craig Smith leading Preds in points (15), goals (seven), power play goals (three).

14

10

10-9-1

6-4-0

Chris Higgins quietly on pace for a 28-goal season, which would be a career best.

15

14

11-8-2

4-5-1

Injury bug starting to bite down hard on Jekyll-and-Hyde Leafs.

16

11

9-8-2

5-5-0

Steven Stamkos, Martin St-Louis still looking for first game-winning goals of the season.

17

23

10-7-2

5-3-2

Alex Steen is Ken Hitchcock's kind of player: a team-leading seven goals and a plus-11.

18

18

10-5-3

7-2-1

Mike Smith (2.16 goals-against average, .936 save percentage) carrying load for Yotes in net.

19

19

10-6-3

5-2-3

With 11 assists and 18 points in 19 games, Stephen Weiss is on pace for 30 goals and 77 points, both of which would be career highs.

20

20

9-8-3

6-3-1

Inconsistent Habs never seem to be anywhere close to fully healthy.

21

21

10-7-1

6-4-0

Four-games-in-six-nights stretch begins against tough Panthers, but gets easier after that, with Blue Jackets and weekend home-and-home series against Isles.

22

16

10-7-2

5-5-0

Thumping of Chicago Saturday doesn't erase losses to Sens, Hawks earlier last week.

23

24

10-9-2

4-4-2

Sens special teams a contrast in success: power play is ranked seventh in league at 20.8 percent, but penalty kill 23rd overall at 79.1 percent.

24

22

9-11-1

2-7-1

Avs aiming to improve dreadful 3-7-0 in Denver during six-game homestand that begins Wednesday against Vancouver.

25

29

8-9-3

5-3-2

Three-game win streak pulled Jets out of Southeast basement, but three-game road trip this week (against Caps, Canes and Bruins) may put them right back.

26

25

7-11-3

3-7-0

Canes now at same stage as Jackets - waiting for change to come.

27

28

8-9-1

5-5-0

Flames start four-game road trip in Columbus, but it gets much tougher from there with showdowns against Wings, Blues, Wild.

28

27

5-9-3

2-5-3

Only Ducks (0.66) have worse 5-on-5 goals-for/against ratio than Isles (0.67).

29

26

6-10-4

1-6-3

D-man Toni Lydman was second overall in plus-minus last season at plus-32; he's a minus-9 this year.

30

30

4-13-2

3-6-1

Playoffs virtually impossible even at this early stage.

The Hockey News ranks the teams 1-30 each Monday based on a combination of last week’s play and a squad’s overall outlook.

For more great profiles, news and views from the world of hockey, subscribe to The Hockey News magazine.

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